Yamaha Takes Center Stage at Disneyland's Home of the Future, Magic Music Days and Health & Fitness Expo

9/19/2008 [Corporate]

Disklavier®, Silent Series®, and BODiBEAT® Add More Musical Excitement to the "Happiest Place on Earth"

BUENA PARK, Calif. — Yamaha Corporation of America and the Disneyland Resort® have enjoyed a mutually beneficial partnership for the past 18 years. In 2005, Yamaha became the official supplier of musical instruments for the Disneyland® Resort. Yamaha Disklaviers, grand pianos, upright pianos, drum kits and sound reproduction and recording equipment are now placed in numerous locations throughout the "Happiest Place on Earth," including the sumptuous Grand Californian Hotel and the Grand Ballroom of the Disneyland Hotel.

Yamaha Disneyland Partnership
Executives from the Yamaha Corporation and Disneyland meet to celebrate their partnership. Pictured are (l. to r.) Mr. Masahito Kato, Executive Officer, Yamaha Corporation of Japan; Mr. Motoki Takahashi, Director, Yamaha Corporation of Japan; Rick Young, Senior Vice President, Yamaha Corporation of America; Mr. Mitsuru Umemura, President, Yamaha Corporation of Japan; Ed Grier, President, Disneyland Resort; Tom Sumner, Senior Vice President, Yamaha Corporation of America; Hogan Osawa, President, Yamaha Corporation of America, David Miller, Alliance Director, Disneyland Resort; David Bergstrom, Director of Corporate Business Development, Yamaha Corporation of America.
The relationship between the Walt Disney Company, the largest employer of professional musicians in the world, and Yamaha, the world's largest manufacturer of musical instruments, has thrived and grown in many ways over the past several years. "We're located just down the street from Disneyland," says David Bergstrom, Director of Corporate Business Development for Yamaha Corporation of America. He coordinates the efforts of a team of Yamaha managers and staff representatives who work to satisfy the diverse needs of the Disneyland Resort.

"It's a really interesting relationship with multiple and unique levels of intersection. In addition to being the official supplier of musical instruments for Disneyland, we are now pleased to be able to deepen this partnership by sponsoring the All-America College Band during Disney Magic Music Days and by being an integral part of the "House of the Future" Innoventions Exhibit. And now, for the second year, our new BODiBEAT MP3 player is helping us to create a vital Yamaha presence during one of Disneyland's most exciting family events, the Disneyland Half Marathon. We're very pleased by all of these opportunities for Disneyland visitors to experience and interact with Yamaha instruments and products. It's definitely an exciting time for everyone involved."

Vacationers, visitors and guests at events held at the Disneyland Resort have long experienced a rich musical experience whether attending weddings, corporate gatherings, concerts or the countless musical events that are integral to the Disney offerings.

Each year, about two million people flock to Disneyland's Innoventions Dream Home in Tomorrowland. In June, after a year of renovations, the futuristic home — which is both a show and a hands-on product showcase — re-opened with several Yamaha instruments, including a Yamaha Disklavier and Silent Series instruments, as focal points of the experience. Yamaha instruments are featured in an engaging interactive display at the outset of the exhibit which allows youngsters and their parents to play Yamaha instruments — an electronic drum kit, Clavinova digital piano and EZ AG guitar — individually and in ensemble prior to entering the Home of the Future. Once inside, the Yamaha Disklavier astounds visitors with its sound system as well as its capabilities as a concert instrument and as a virtual music teacher.

"Visitors can use the Disklavier's TouchScreen to hear fantastic live performances and full arrangements of everyone's favorite Disney music, such as Pirates of the Caribbean, see synchronized video playback or take interactive music lessons. It's a real showstopper. Everyone's having a really great time and parents are there, videotaping, while their kids are having a one-of-a-kind musical experience," adds Bergstrom.

In addition to its instrument and sound recording product placements, Yamaha sponsors the internationally acclaimed Disney Magic Music Days, a unique educational experience designed for students of the arts. Each year, over 130,000 talented high school students visit and perform at the parks. Instrumental, vocal and dance ensembles showcase their talents in a professional setting, study with professionals in their respective fields, and have a great deal of fun, as well.

During Magic Music Days, Yamaha presents the All-America College Band, comprised of students selected during highly competitive auditions held throughout the country. The summer internship program offers 25 promising young instrumentalists the opportunity to work for nine weeks under the direction of Ron McCurdy, director of the jazz program at the University of Southern California.

"Students perform five shows a day and earn a salary," says Bergstrom. "Many of the 'Magic Music Days' graduates are now professional musicians or heads of music departments at prestigious schools. Ron went through the program himself in the 1970s, so he's a particularly inspiring role model and mentor for aspiring musicians."

On August 31, Yamaha was once again an integral part of the Disneyland Half-Marathon, one of Disney's premier family destination events. Runners traverse 13.6 miles of trails from the Anaheim Convention Center to Disney's California Adventure® Park to the Disneyland® Park then on to the streets of Anaheim, the Santa Ana Trail overlooking the Santa Ana River, past Angel Stadium and finally back to Disney's California Adventure® Park for an exciting finish at the Happiest Race on Earth.

In conjunction with the marathon, the Health & Fitness Expo held at Disneyland Hotel Convention Center on August 29 - 30, focused on health and fitness, and served as a perfect venue to reveal Yamaha's revolutionary BODiBEAT MP3 player. BODiBEAT is a portable music player that automatically selects and plays the right music to stay in synch with the steps of a runner or walker and to keep pace with any workout. It's the ultimate motivator because it intelligently selects and plays music to keep pace with footsteps. "BODiBEAT has been in product development for the past year, and we just started shipping it August 1," notes Bergstrom. "Its unveiling at the Disney Half Marathon was one of its first public appearances and I'm pleased to say it really generated a great deal of excitement and interest."

The strong relationship between Yamaha and Disneyland exemplifies the infinite possibilities created when leaders who share a full spectrum of interests — entertainment, music, education, a commitment to quality, state-of-the-art technology and good old fashioned family values — work together to create a finely attuned corporate collaboration.

For more information, write Yamaha Corporation of America, P.O. Box 6600, Buena Park, CA 90622; telephone (714) 522-9011; or e-mail infostation@yamaha.com.

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